Ireland U20

Discussion in 'International Test Matches' started by snoopy snoopy dog dog, Feb 1, 2009.

  1. <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE </div>

    The provincial breakdown is:

    Connacht - 1
    Leinster - 13
    Munster - 4
    Ulster - 4
    Neath - 2

    It's a very mixed squad in terms of talent level. There are 7 or 8 guys who could go far in the game while the rest are no more than average. The best players on show are Burke, Kearney, Foley, Keating, McKinley and O'Brien among the backs with Macklin, McGrath and Sandford the pick of the forwards. Burke and McKinley are the best flyhalf prospects to come through the schools system since Jeremy Staunton (a wasted talent), Emmet Farrell (career was ruined by injuries - now Blackrock RFC backs coach) and Ronan O'Gara (Farrell's backup at underage level). McGrath is only a few months out of school and has propped for Leinster A already. Kearney isn't in the same class as his brother but is a fine finisher and talented all round player. Keating is an excellent finisher and is proving it for Clontarf in the AIL. Foley is very skillful but needs to bulk up. O'Brien is a highly rated winger for Connacht and has featured in a couple of friendlies. Macklin is a powerful ball carrier but needs to refine his scrummaging. Sandford is a towering 2nd row who needs to impose himself a little more.

    I'd be confident that most of the players I've named will go on to have long, productive careers.
  2. Forum Ad Advertisement

  3. danny

    danny Guest

    Thats an amazing number of players from Leinster. They must have a very good youth set up?
  4. <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (danny @ Feb 1 2009, 07:53 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    It's a good setup alright. A couple of years ago when Ireland won the u20 Grand Slam, this was the team to play Wales:

    Ireland Under-20: Felix Jones; Shane Monahan, Darren Cave, Aidan Wynne, Keith Earls; Ian Keatley, Paul O'Donohoe; David Millard, Richard Sweeney, Jamie Hagan, Conor McInerney, Andrew Browne, Thomas Anderson, David Pollock (capt), Sean O'Brien.
    Replacements: Ger Slattery, Ruaidhri Murphy, Neilus Keogh, Tommy O'Donnell, David Drake, Niall O'Connor, Kyle Tonetti.

    Bolded are those who came through the Leinster system (8 starters and 2 subs). On top of that Luke Fitzgerald and Cian Healy were eligible for the same age group while Aidan Wynne (who started in the centre) came through Leinster schools rugby (with Blackrock).

    Every year Leinster seem to produce the bulk of the underage squads but it doesn't always hold true that they break through to full international level. While Munster and Ulster produce less in terms of quantity, the players they bring through are often of an equal or better standard to Leinster. It could be argued that of the Grand Slam winning team, Earls, Cave and Pollock were the best players, none of whom are involved with Leinster. From this particular group, Andrew Burke of Munster may very well be the most talented player.
  5. monkeypigeon

    monkeypigeon Guest

    Snoopy, you seem the expert at this, how do they compare to to the grandslam team?
  6. <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Monkeypigeon @ Feb 1 2009, 08:55 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    The current bunch aren't nearly as good. In my opinion only Burke (at 10), McKinley (12), McGrath (1) and possibly Sandford (4/5) would make the grand slam team.
  7. monkeypigeon

    monkeypigeon Guest

    Well if we had a group like the grandslam team every year we'd need never worry about losing.
  8. feicarsinn

    feicarsinn Guest

    cept to the ABs of course ;)
  9. I was having a quick look at some of the profiles of the players. It seems as though Mark Flanagan has played a couple of games for Leinster A which bodes well considering Leinster have quite a few locks in their squad. Also, Rhys Ruddock only turned 18 a couple of months ago which probably points out that he could be a talent worth looking out for. He's in the Ospreys academy at present and only recently declared for Ireland. I wonder if his fathers "relationship" with new Ospreys coach Scott Johnson informed his decision to switch allegiances! Could he be on his way to an Irish provincial setup in the summer?
  10. IRELAND U20 (v France U20):

    15 - Ian Madigan (Blackrock College/Leinster)
    14 - David Kearney (Lansdowne/Leinster)
    13 - Ian McKinley (UCD/Leinster)
    12 - Eamonn Sheridan (Lansdowne/Leinster)
    11 - Michael Keating (Clontarf/Leinster)
    10 - Andrew Burke (Garryowen/Munster)
    9 - Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)
    1 - Jack McGrath (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
    2 - Thomas Sexton (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
    3 - Jack O'Connell (Lansdowne/Leinster)
    4 - Ciaran Ruddock (Neath)
    5 - Mark Flanagan (UCD/Leinster)
    6 - Rhys Ruddock (Neath)
    7 - Dominic Ryan (Lansdowne/Leinster)
    8 - Peter O'Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster).

    16 - David McGregor (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
    17 - Paddy McAllister (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
    18 - James Sandford (Queens University/Ulster)
    19 - Michael Noone (Seapoint & Lansdowne/Leinster)
    20 - John Cooney (UCD/Leinster)
    21 - Gary Foley (Blackrock College/Leinster)
    22 - Mark Doyle (U.L. Bohemians/Munster).

    Sandford not getting picked is the most surprising selection since he was a regular at this level last year. It's an exciting if lightweight backline.
Enjoyed this thread? Register to post your reply - click here!

Share This Page